Figaro sent down, French to start Friday
We have a rotation switch: Alfredo Figaro was optioned back to Triple-A Toledo after the game, and Luke French is coming back up. He’ll join the Tigers in Oakland, work briefly out of the bullpen there and then start Friday’s series opener at Minnesota.
“We just felt like giving French a shot against them,” manager Jim Leyland said.
The move seemed to have less to do with Figaro’s performance in Houston Saturday, though that certainly didn’t help, and a little more to do with the matchup. Adding French gives the Tigers a left-handed starter to put up against Joe Mauer and Justin Morneau, though Leyland didn’t really want to talk about that.
French has been on an absolute tear recently, basically for the last month. He has given up four earned runs on 16 hits with 26 strikeouts over 23 innings in his last three starts, though he hasn’t won any of them. Further back than that, he has lasted at least 6 2/3 innings with two earned runs or less in five of his last six starts, bringing down his ERA for the year to 2.98.